Israel’s Foreign Minister, Eli Cohen, has accused Ireland’s Prime Minister, Leo Varadkar, of “normalizing terrorism”, after he celebrated the release of Emily Handa 9-year-old Israeli-Irish girl, saying she “got lost” and failing to mention that she was held hostage by Hamas in Gaza.
“Mr Prime Minister, it seems you have lost your moral compass and need a reality check. Emily Hand was not ‘lost’, She was kidnapped by a terrorist organization worse than the Islamic State that murdered her stepmother“Cohen said on the social network
Hours earlier, Varadkar had celebrated in a statement through release of Hand along with 12 other Israeli hostages who left Gaza yesterday as part of the agreement to exchange hostages for prisoners and temporary ceasefire with Hamas.
“This is a day of enormous joy and relief for Emily Hand and her family. An innocent girl who was lost has now been found and returned, we breathe with great relief,” said the Irish president, in a comment where does not refer to Hamas nor to the fact that the minor was kidnapped by Palestinian militias.
After that, Cohen also decided to call the Irish ambassador to Israel to express his discomfort.
“Following the scandalous words of the Prime Minister of Ireland regarding the release of Emily Hand, who was kidnapped in Gaza by the terrorist organization Hamas, I summoned the Irish ambassador to Israel for a reprimand,” Cohen announced via X.
Hand had been kidnapped during the militants’ attack on October 7 in Israel, when she was in her place of residence, Kibbutz Beeri, a collective community a few kilometers from Gaza, where dozens of people were killed and about 80 captured.
Hand’s stepmother died in the attackwhile the girl was taken to Gaza along with a friend she was with.